Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A break in the clouds reveals the sunshine

The wet season has been making its presence known and over the weekend the roads were flooded, making us housebound.  I managed to do quite a bit of sewing, and then the whole house got a very good clean.  Good, now I dont need to feel guilty when the garden calls:)  First thing was to cut back some of the mandevilla vine which the franzipani has been trying to escape from.  I hope with all the extra light it will flower a bit more.
 I was also pleased to see strawberry flowers - this is the first time I have grown strawberries.  I had two hanging pots and the one disintegrated in a heap after just a couple of months.  I think I might get some more pots that actually attach to the fence with nails - they seem to do better in this climate than the hanging baskets.  I think I might move them to a wooden fence out the front as well.

My new seeds were calling to be planted, and with the sun making an appearance on Sunday afternoon I ventured outside.  Last weekend I had planted out some microgreens, anxious for an early start to our growing season.... they have been doing well.  I planted some in seed raising mix and some in the microgreens growing kit that I received from MrFothergills.   I didnt plant the seeds in the seed raising mix as thickly as the ones in the tray, but I do notice that there are a few that have not sprouted in the seed raising mix.  Funny I would have thought it would be the other way around. I guess all the goodness is actually already in the seed, and they dont really need extra nutrients.  I have been watering with a light seaweed solution in a spray bottle.  I didnt of course label what I planted, but know that the ones in the tray are purple basil and rocket.  Awesome on tomato!  What is not to love about baby basil :)
My little asparagus seedlings look very spindly, but I am going to have to put them in some bigger pots soon as the roots are rising above the seed raising mix..  I also might have to increase the size of the asparagus bed to accomodate them....  such an easy crop to grow and being perrenial means they are just always there, no more investment needed, and they will produce for the next twenty years - whats not to like about that?

The wicking beds each got a sprinkle of lettuce seeds, and I planted eggplant and warrigal greens into the seed trays.  Two little pots of parsley seed and then some more eggplant into the blue pot.  I have an eggplant that has survived the wet season in the other wicking bed, but for some reason only seems to have male flowers.  Has anyone heard of this happening?  I am anxious to grow eggplant and was thrilled that the wicking bed seemed to be working.

I put out a few strips of  MrFothergills Pak choy seed tape a week ago, and dont know if they survived the flooding rain we had.  I love that seed tape - especially for the grandkids - so much easier to handle than tiny seeds. We just lay out the tape and then sprinkle with seed raising mix. I see little bits of green poking their heads up - but they could be weeds. 

I have a choko starting to sprout but want to make sure it is a bit drier before I plant it out - I have had them rot away to slime once before.....

  I also fermented and dried out some purple passionfruit seeds, the way I would keep tomato seeds.  I am hoping they will grow a luscious thick vine dripping with sweet fruit.  Passionfruit has a limited life and then must be re-planted in a different area.   We had a lovely yellow fruited vine for about three years, and since then I have struggled to start another one, particularly a purple one.  I will start a few seeds in seed raising mix and then also some straight into the ground.

I love making plans for the start of a new season, and knowing that the wet season will eventually end has spurred me on.


  1. If you get too much rain you can always send some our way. Looks like everything's growing well. I'm sure you will have no trouble growing the passionfruit. We have them sprout in the compost bin.

    1. We have the yellow one coming up all over the place, but I wanted to grow the purple one for a change.

  2. your plants are doing fine, with new weather coming....

    1. Yes it is addictive, every year I get the bug :)

  3. I am so in love with your beautiful garden. It will be another month here before we can get some lettuce and all in, and we look forward to getting out in our gardens every spring. The Mandavilla here is not a perennial so has to be replaced every year with new plants. They are loved here but don't grow much over four feet. I always love stopping in here to see what's happening and what's being planted, harvested, cleared away and what's just coming up. Always inspiring for sure.

    1. thank you LindaLee. This was a real surprise plant, it loves my garden, and it is always in flower.

  4. Wow, your seed planting is off to a great start.....I'm sure they'll all do well for you.
    The purple passion fruit sounds very interesting....don't think I've heard of one before.

    1. Viginia,
      I think I should sprinkle the seeds a little thicker on the mix but with the wet weather I thought they might get a fungus. yes we have the yellow and the purple one, people often say the purple is sweeter, but really I cant tell the difference :)


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